Life Cycle Assessment of the Battery Electric Passenger Vehicle Lithium-Ion Power Battery
Posted: 15 Jul 2019
Date Written: July 13, 2019
This study evaluated and quantified the life cycle environmental impacts of lithium-ion power battery (LIB) for battery electric passenger vehicles (BEVs) to identify key stages that contribute to the overall environmental burden and to find ways to reduce these burdens effectively. The study covers all relevant life cycle stages: from the acquisition of raw materials to the production, use, and end-of-life. China Automotive Life Cycle Database (CALCD) and primary data collected onsite in Chinese power battery industry from 2017 to 2018 were used in the assessment. The evaluation is presented in terms of individual impact category according to the CML model. Six impact categories (i.e., primary energy demand (PED), global warming potential (GWP), acidification potential (AP), photochemical oxidant creation potential (POCP), eutrophication potential (EP), and human toxicity potential (HTP)) were considered. The research was conducted in accordance with the ISO 14040/14044 standards. Use stage is the primary contributor to the life cycle PED and GWP, while raw material acquisition stage is the largest contributor to the life cycle AP, POCP, EP and HTP of LIBs. In the raw material acquisition stage, cathode active material and wrought aluminum are the predominant contributors for PED, GWP AP, POCP and HTP, and electrolyte is the main contributor for EP in the battery cell materials. In the LIBs production stage, coating/drying and vacuum drying are two main contributors of all the six impact categories. In the end-of-life stage, material recycling can largely reduce the environmental impacts of LIBs, especially for AP and POCP. From the sensitivity analysis, in order to reduce the life cycle environmental impacts of LIBs, improving the energy efficiency of LIBs, reducing the electricity consumption of BEVs and optimizing the mass proportion of cathode active material could be effective measures. This study reduces the uncertainties associated with the life cycle assessment of LIBs, serves to identify opportunities to full life cycle environmental impacts reduction of LIBs.
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